My Testimony

Today I had the honor of speaking at my cousin’s church in Alabama, to give my testimony. I thought I would share it also with you in my blogging world. I hope you enjoy!

My Testimony:

Hello, first I would like to thank you for giving me the opportunity to tell my story. I was very fortunate to be raised in a Christian home. I had that spiritual foundation of going to church, reading the Bible, saying my prayers at night, knowing who God is. But it wasn’t until I was in high school that I actually accepted Christ into my heart and became a Christian.

 

Music is a big part of my life, a big part of who I am. Its how I connect with the world, how I deal with emotions. There is a new song on the radio right now by The Fray called “You Found Me”. It starts off by saying, “I found God and the corner of 1st and Amistad.” What I think is so significant about my story is not how I found God, but how God found me.

 

When I was 20 years old I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. Like anyone at 20 I already knew everything there was to know about life and could take on the world. And that is exactly what I tried to do. I had my ups and downs with the MS, but I was a fighter and nothing was going to knock me down. Then my MS took a serious turn for the worst and we could no longer control the progression of the disease or my symptoms. And when I thought I was still strong enough to take on the world by myself, God found me lying in a hospital bed in Atlanta, GA in 2003 with my doctor telling me he didn’t know if I was ever going to walk again. And lying there, I arrogantly smiled at my doctor and told him “You just don’t know who you’re dealing with, I will walk again.” As The Fray’s song goes on to say, “Lost and insecure – You Found Me, You Found Me.” What God found was a lost, insecure and scared soul that didn’t know what to do or how to do it, a soul that still felt she could take on anything by herself. And He took my hand and gave me the strength and courage to make some decisions no 25-yr old should ever have to make. Through chemotherapy, a whole lot of prayers and God’s grace I am walking again.

 

When things are going bad in our lives, we always like to question why God is doing this, or where was He when this evil was going on. But when the roses smell sweet and life is perfect, we often times forget to thank God for His mercy and see His grace. At least I did. I had a great job, a wonderful husband and my life was just about perfect. And the more perfect my life became, the less I depended on God and the further I drifted from our relationship.

 

Continuing on with The Fray’s lyrics, they say, “Where were you, when everything was falling about?? Lying on the floor, Surround Me, Surround Me.”  The next time God found me it was April 2008, I was lying on the floor of a hotel room in North Carolina screaming out in pain for God to just be with me. See my marriage had fallen apart, I was getting a divorce and my entire life as I knew it was being flipped upside down. And the pain and fear of that was more than I could physically bear. What God found was a severely broken soul who needed Him more than any other time in her life. And He wrapped His arms around me, picked me back off the floor and kept telling me over and over, “I’m right here, I’m right here with you. You will not go through this alone.” And I didn’t. He stood right beside me every step of the way. And from that moment on I made the decision that I would never walk alone again.

 

Sometimes I believe God has to break us down to our weakest to build us up to be our strongest. And maybe that was part of His purpose with my divorce. Because little did I know what was right around the corner. See, the next time I needed Him – when my Mom was rushing me to the hospital because my heart went into failure, God didn’t have to find me. He was already right there. After my divorce I made the decision that this time I wasn’t going to let the Big Man go. And when the doctor looked at me and said, “I just don’t know what is going to happen with your heart. I don’t know if we will ever be able to get it strong enough to function like it did before”, there wasn’t an arrogant little girl responding, there was a strong, confident Christian who politely smiled back and said, “You don’t know who you’re dealing with. We will get my heart strong again.”

 

The Fray’s song ends in saying “In the end we all end up alone. Why’d you have to wait to find me?”. I don’t know what tomorrow holds for me, but I do know Who holds tomorrow. And I know I will never be alone in anything I face. In Isaiah 42, God says, “I will guide them along paths they have not known, I will make the darkness become light for them and the rough grounds smooth.” And true to His word, He has done that for me. So no matter how shattered my heart is emotionally, or how broken my heart is medically, my heart has never been stronger or more whole spiritually than it is now and will always be with Christ in my heart. I live with the reality that I may wake up tomorrow and my heart decides to take its last beat, but my heart will forever be alive in Christ.

 

God tells us that He will never leave us or forsake us. And even when I turned my back on Him, He never left my side. He also tells us that He will never give us more than we can handle, and I take extreme comfort knowing that. So if I can ask you to take anything away from my story, it would be this. Don’t wait for God to find you, as the song says. Seek Him out in your everyday life.

 

Again, Thank you for allowing me to tell my story. And thank you God for what you have done in my life – I would not be standing here without you!

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5 Responses to “My Testimony”

  1. Brooke Says:

    Amazing…truly beautiful! What a great way with words you have! I will never hear that song again without thinking about this speech! I am so proud of you! Love you girl!

  2. Cathy Bowyer Says:

    OH LINZ, I thank God for you every day. You are truely awesome,The Lord will bless you sharing your heart and telling people It is God that makes the difference in your life. YOU are my hero!! I love you Mom

  3. Tissi Says:

    You are an amazing young woman! 🙂

  4. pam Says:

    🙂 wow.

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